Spring Nights - Danjal Jannik Nyberg - ebook

Spring Nights ebook

Danjal Jannik Nyberg

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80,35 zł

Opis

For a long time he was only met by silence and then a fragile voice, a voice he didn't recognise, came through: "It's me... they killed him." Thomas's body froze, he thought that whoever it was had pushed the wrong button, that he was still asleep and had an incredibly livid nightmare, that it was a bad joke, and that the feeling that the floor disappeared from under his feet had to be his imagination. "Who?" he asked in a panic. "Who is it?" How could he resist a voice so full of fear? Thomas is having a hard time forgetting his ex-boyfriend, Anders, until he meets Duncan. But one night the past comes back, carrying a terrible secret. How far would you go for the ones you love?

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Liczba stron: 275




Now…

An annoying, insistent, electronic chiming.

Thomas fights his way out of his sleep, the dream disappears and with it Anders, shrouded in red. Red for love and passion, red for joie de vivre. Red for death.

At once he is wide awake, hastily leaves the bed without waking Duncan and hurries to the living room where the cell phone lies on the coffee table. He answers it quickly: “Hello?”

An ominous silence, heavy breathing. He knows how it is, he has experienced it many times before. “It’s okay”, he says calmly and lights a cigarette. “Take it easy, just take your time.”

A deep inhale and then a tiny voice from a young girl trying to fight back the tears: “It’s my boyfriend, he… it’s been going on for a while now. I have tried everything, but he…” She cannot control her crying now and Thomas leans back on the couch, takes a drag on his cigarette and waits patiently for her to calm herself a bit. “Just take your time”, he repeats sympathetically.

“Okay.” She clears her throat. “He… he…” She starts crying again. “Oh, fuck it!”

“Do you want to meet?” Thomas asks this to make the girl feel confident in him. It is a standard question and surprisingly few turn down the offer. “Then you can give me all the details.”

“Yes,” she answers with almost no hesitation. “Yes, I think that would be best.”

“Okay.” He gets paper and pen. “Give me your address.” He writes while she dictates. “Fine. I can be there in twenty minutes. Take it easy. Make yourself a cup of coffee.”

They hang up and he goes into the kitchen, splashes his face with water, runs his fingers through his short, dark hair, goes back to Duncan and awakens him with a kiss on the cheek. “I’m leaving now, babe.”

Duncan turns around and looks at him. “Another one?” He shakes his head. “Will people ever learn?”

“Here’s to hoping. I don’t know when I’ll be back.”

“Okay.” He kisses Thomas gently on his beautifully shaped lips.

“Take care.”

“I will.”

It is September.

Then…

Contents

Chapter One

Chapter Two

Chapter Three

Chapter Four

Chapter Five

Chapter Six

Chapter Seven

Chapter Eight

Chapter Nine

Chapter Ten

Chapter Eleven

Chapter Twelve

Chapter Thirteen

Chapter Fourteen

Chapter Fifteen

Chapter Sixteen

One

“Thomas, get your fucking ass in gear!”

“Shut up, wifey!”

“Thank God I’m not your wife.”

“No, and who’s the happier for it?”

“Funny. Come on, the bus leaves in a few minutes!”

“Another one will come along.”

“Thomas!”

“Yeah, yeah, will be right there.”

Thomas and Katinka ran down the stairs, down the street and reached the bus stop seconds before the bus arrived. Laughing and gasping for breath they sat down. “You’ll be the death of me,” she said with a smile.

“Bollocks. It’s healthy for you.”

“Now I won’t have the energy to dance tonight.”

“I’ll see to it that you do.”

They got off at The Town Hall Square, walked down Strøget, the big shopping street in the center of Copenhagen, towards Adonis, the newly opened gay disco. It was the third Saturday of March, the weather was pleasant and people on the street were in a good mood.

Thomas was almost always able to get Katinka to go with him to Adonis. She had a boyfriend, who worked every other weekend, so it didn’t matter to her if she were going to gay places (gay and lesbian places, Thomas would point out). In fact, she enjoyed it; guys never came on to her, and if you could tell by the looks if women were lesbians, it was obvious she was straight, so the girls also left her alone. However, there never were a lot of girls.

Adonis was already full, the temperature high, and they fought their way to the bar to get something cold to drink. They stood there a while, talked, both being on the lookout for a “possible prospect” for Thomas. Not that he’d have a hard time finding a boyfriend, and he wasn’t picky, he just didn’t want second best – he’d had enough of those.

“What about that dark-haired one in the corner?” Katinka asked.

“Nah, he looks too boring.”

“He’s good-looking.”

“Good-looking, yes, but no personality.”

“Damn, you’re a pain. I pity your next boyfriend.”

“You only say that because you… ” He stopped talking, looked across the room, had forgotten what he was about to say, almost forgot where he was, and why. There, less than ten meters away, was the guy he had been looking for his entire life. He was slim, a bit taller than Thomas, had short, brownish hair, and the liveliest bluish-grey eyes Thomas had ever seen. The guy noticed him, too, sent him a smile that could melt the ice caps and went into the disco.

“For fuck’s sake, did you see him?”

“Who?”

“Who? Have you gone completely blind?” Without thinking he put the not even half finished beer down and went in the same direction as the guy. Katinka came running after him: “Have you gone mad?”

“No, but I will if I don’t get him.”

“Who?” Katinka asked again, hesitantly, while trying to keep up with Thomas.

He stopped, looked around after the other and waved his arms impatiently. “Him… the yummy-nommy-lovebitey guy.”

Katinka frowned. “The yummy-nommy-lovebitey guy?” she repeated, disbelieving.

“Yes!”

She sighed. “Please, try to make sense.”

“That… cuddly-wuddly.”

“That’s it. You’ve had enough.”

He turned to look at her. “Katinka, I swear… if I don’t get him and marry him, I will wander the earth restlessly till the end of time.”

“Aha.”

“Exactly. And now, please excuse me, there’s someone I need to find. Get something to drink.” Absentmindedly he handed her some cash.

“I don’t want your money!”

“Just take them. Use them wisely.” He disappeared in the dancing and sweating crowd and Katinka slowly shook her head. She knew Thomas when he’d gotten to that point. She hadn’t yet decided if she thought he was a fool or cunning; he saw a guy and kept on chasing him until he either got shot down or got the green light. She supposed it made sense. You might as well get to know the outcome right away so you didn’t waste your time and energy om something that went nowhere.

Yes, she agreed with herself, Thomas was sensible enough. She went to the bar to spend his money.

Thomas felt like the biggest fool; he’d seen the guy a fraction of a second and already behaved like he was the one he would share his life with. Their eyes had met, briefly – very briefly, in fact – but Thomas was a firm believer in love at first sight, didn’t doubt it for one second. It was with this he’d had the best experiences, at least. Just look at how it went with Anders. He had loved him, no question about that, but it had most definitely not been love at first sight, and he had left big scars on Thomas’s soul, scars that just now – almost eighteen months later – were healing. And he was convinced that this guy, this apparition with the bluish-grey eyes, was the one who would be able to close the bleeding wounds once and for all. So he had to find him, whatever the cost.

But as he looked across the dance floor and the people crowding it, he realised it was an impossible situation. It seemed that every gay guy and girl from Copenhagen and surroundings had decided to go out tonight. It was definitely hard to spot one particular person. He sighed. It was unfair to think his Greek god had already vanished from his life, one minute after he had met him.

He climbed the stairs to the balcony, stood by the railing and looked at the crowd. It was hopeless, he was nowhere to be seen. Thomas went back down, looked in the coat check to see if he was about to leave, went through the whole disco, top to bottom, corner to corner.

He had disappeared; an evil wizard had made him vanish into thin air.

Sighing, he went to look for Katinka and found her by the window on the second floor.

“Did you find him?”

“No… ”

“Maybe he’s in the bathroom. It’s still early.”

“Maybe… ” He lit a cigarette. “You should have seen him, Tinka.”

“But I didn’t.”

“No.” He turned to look out the window, into the back yard. “It sounds stupid, but… ” Sadness crept over him and closed its ugly fist around his heart. “One look from his eyes made me feel younger than ever.”

“Thomas… ”

“Yeah, yeah, I know.” He looked at her. “I know that I’m a hopeless romantic, but I have been single for eighteen months.

Am I that terrible?”

“I don’t know. I love you a bunch. And you will get a boyfriend again, just wait.”

“Yeah, but when?”

“When you’re not chasing it. When it no longer is the most important thing in your life.”

Thomas threw the butt on the floor and stomped on it. “Wanna dance? We’re here to have fun.”

As he followed Katinka he caught movement in the yard. It was him, the guy with the bluish-grey eyes, leaving. A shiver went through his body. Then he collected all his strength, followed Tinka to the dance floor, had a fun night and didn’t mention anything else about the guy that forever had disappeared from his life.

When he woke the next morning after only four hours of sleep, he thought he had dreamt about him. He wasn’t sure, maybe he confused it with the thoughts he’d had before falling asleep.

He stretched, got up, lit a cigarette. Today, he sensed, would be filled with unresolved feelings. For the first time in eighteen moths he had seen a guy that could make him forget about Anders, and that had brought the memories back with doubled intensity, memories about what he’d lost, about what could have been, of what had been. About what would never be.

He looked at the clock. A quarter past eleven. He considered calling Katinka, but she was probably still sleeping, in the safe knowledge that her boyfriend was lying next to her.

He cursed himself; she was right, a boyfriend should not be the most important thing in your life, it should just be a nice bonus. He made himself a cup of coffee, turned on his computer, quickly checked his mail (as usual, there was a mail about getting the NEWEST SMARTPHONE FOR ONLY FUCK-ALL A MONTH, but he hated cell phones, because it made people expecting you to be available 24/7), tried once again to remember his password for Facebook – which he’d forgotten months ago and still hadn’t managed to reset – opened a new document and sat for a long time, just staring at the illuminated screen.

Suddenly he wrote

In gardens green we’ll rise and fall

and stopped.

He knew he had a knack for writing poems. English, Danish, didn’t matter, but lately he’d lost the spark. Someone once said that writing was born of misery, and it was partly true; however, misery could become so overwhelming that all creativity went belly-up. And it was that deadlock Thomas was now caught in. He hadn’t managed to break the ties to his ex-boyfriend and for every day, they cut like burning barbed wire into his vulnerable consciousness and didn’t leave room for much else than self-pity and self-hatred.

Logically he knew that he wasn’t to blame for what had happened, that it was Anders who’d given up. But it didn’t affect his state. He felt betrayed, fucked over, soiled, less than, and he hoped – if there were any justice – that Anders felt worse. He hoped he felt dirty, low, ridiculous and that he had a consciousness so black that he couldn’t sleep at night for fear what might emerge from the shadows.

With a sigh Thomas turned off the computer and lit another cigarette. He didn’t want these feelings, to be so consumed by hatred. If it were up to him, he would wish Anders all the best, now and forever, but he just couldn’t.

For almost eighteen months he had tried to forget him.

Last night he almost succeeded.

Today he was back like a mental parasite.

Two

It had been a tough week. The memories of Anders had been a constant, at work, at home, every waking moment, and also while he was sleeping. Every night he dreamt the same dream, like an echo from the past: Anders who, with an unfathomable look in his eyes, told him how things were.

Every morning he had awoken with a clenching sorrow, a sorrow which he worked through during the day, almost gone by the time he went to bed, but by morning had returned.

He was afraid, he had to admit, afraid of being alone, afraid he’d never find love again… afraid that Anders was fine without him. And he was terrified at the prospect of never getting over him.

But now it was the weekend yet again and he was going to dinner at a friend’s. After, they might be going out, and yet again Thomas would fear running into Anders, and that fear would put a damper on a nice night. He knew this, he had been through it many times before.

After dinner they drank a couple of beers. Lasse had invited four other friends; one of them was Matthias, whom Thomas had been helplessly in love with years ago, but it hadn’t been mutual. Shortly after Thomas had met Anders, Matthias had pledged him his love, and during the last year or so, Thomas had thought about trying to make a relationship with him work. They were together a few times before agreeing that they probably just should keep it friendly between them. They partly succeeded, but it occasionally happened that they went home together after a night out, and every time they had assured each other, that this would be the last time. Eventually they didn’t believe it themselves, but it had become a necessity to say, so they both knew they could have their occasional fun, but that it would stop the moment one of them got a boyfriend. It hadn’t happened yet, they were both available, but the thought that they might end up together again tonight didn’t sit well with Thomas. He always became sad afterwards, because they wouldn’t be able to get serious. Not because he was still in love with Matthias, but because he was reminded of what he didn’t have: a wonderful boyfriend, a life partner, someone to wake up next to and cuddle with at night. Their sex was always great, but only fulfilling on a physical level. They both wanted more, but knew they had to find it elsewhere.

So when Matthias, shortly after arriving at Adonis, started hitting on him, he got annoyed and angry. It was the last thing he needed tonight, so he promptly asked one of the others if he wanted to dance. Thomas didn’t know the song, but it was one of the usual, brain-dead rhythms, sprinkled with the usual brain-dead lyrics, sung by a mediocre singer of the Britney Spears variety. But it was easy to get into, so a moment later Thomas and the other were standing in the crowd on the dance floor and were pushed around. He glanced up at the balcony where the others stood, talking, oblivious to what was going on around them, except for Matthias, who leaned against the railing, looking down on him. In the dimness it was hard to see his expression clearly, but Thomas thought he saw a hurt coldness in his eyes; his stare was very direct and not even a hint of a smile showed on his lips.

Thomas looked the other way. He could live with Matthias wanting to have sex with him again tonight, it was what it was, but him being offended that Thomas had denied him…

They both knew the rules of the game, they had both agreed to them: none of them were committed to the other, none of them should feel tied down, and they both had free reigns to find a boyfriend.

And maybe that was what puzzled Thomas. Matthias was a wonderful, good-looking guy, so why hadn’t he met someone yet? Was he still in love with Thomas or had he just not met anyone with potential?

His dancing partner said something and Thomas turned to him: “Sorry?”

“I said I want something to drink. See ya later.”

“Okay.”

He went to the bar and even though Thomas hated dancing on his own, he remained where he was; he didn’t feel like confronting Matthias right now.

He actually didn’t feel like anything but going home.

He left the dance floor, went to the bathroom and waited in line. He was the fourth in line and those who were already in the loo were taking their fucking time. He lit a cigarette and the first one finished and the next went in. The bathroom door opened again and Matthias came in. He stood next to Thomas and they smiled at each other without saying a word.

Five minutes later the two remaining guys had gone into the stalls and Thomas would be up next. He threw the butt on the floor, crushed it with his shoe and in that moment Matthias moved in front of him, held his hands in a tight grip, pressed him against the wall and started kissing him. For a short moment he was tempted to give in, but withdrew. “Not tonight”, he said calmly.

Matthias didn’t loosen his grip. “What’s wrong? Am I suddenly not good enough?” His voice had a touch of anger and coldness Thomas hadn’t heard before. He tried to get free. “It has nothing to do with you, it’s just… ”

But Matthias wasn’t listening anymore and finally he let go, opened the door and went back into the disco’s hectic darkness. Thomas sighed. Apparently he wasn’t the only one these days standing in an emotional swamp that sucked you in deeper, the harder you fought.

It was his turn to use the loo, he finished, and went directly to the coat check to get his jacket. As he walked through the yard which was wet from rain, he spotted Matthias in a corner. He was with a guy of no more than eighteen. Thomas was about to shout goodnight, but when Matthias saw him, he turned the other way.

It was still raining the next morning. Thomas heard on the news that it probably wouldn’t clear before Sunday afternoon. And there was nothing good on TV. He called Katinka to ask if they should rent a movie or go see one, but she wasn’t at home. It was her boyfriend’s weekend off, by the way, so they probably had better things to do.

He sat in front of the computer with a cigarette and coffee, turned it on, and opened the document he had saved last week. The words were laughing at him.

In gardens green we’ll rise and fall

Their mocking simplicity bothered him and he felt like erasing them, but then the next words came to him. He wrote quickly and after a few moments he had the first verse:

In gardens green we’ll rise and fall

‘hind every bush and tree

My love for you will conquer all

And your love conquer me

His fingers rested on the keyboard, unmoving. He tried to continue, but the words escaped him and with a heavy sigh he gave up. He saved the document, turned off the computer and lit another cigarette. His brain was at the boiling point, he felt he had so much he wanted to get off his chest, but it was hard putting into words. He knew that it probably was about Anders, about Matthias, about the guy with the bluish-grey eyes. Three persons, three times mixed feelings. He briefly wished he could melt into one with the computer, touch a key, and give his brain a well-deserved break.

Misery got hold of him again. Why couldn’t he fall in love with Matthias again? Apparently he was still interested in Thomas, he was nice, handsome, and they had amazing sex. Why should his thoughts circle around the gone, around Anders? They had had their time together, all eight months and eighteen days. It was past, he knew that, they would never get back together again, even though he still kind of hoped. He was almost certain he wouldn’t go back to him, not even if the possibility arose. And at the same time he was afraid that the feelings for him would go away, because then the chance of them getting back together would be gone, too. And that he wasn’t ready to accept.

He made another cup of coffee, made a sandwich, and in that instant the phone rang. His irritation was replaced by surprise when he heard Matthias’s voice on the other end. “Hi Thomas.” He sounded tired, as if he’d just gotten back from town – which he probably had. “I’m sorry about yesterday. I dunno what got into me.”

“It’s fine,” Thomas said. Which was only partly true, but right now he would say anything to get rid of him.

But Matthias continued: “I’m just not used to you brushing me off. You never did before. I was just a bit disappointed.”

Thomas didn’t know what to answer; he had never been good at handling people directly admitting to their lust for him. He opened his mouth but all the wise words were stuck at the back of his throat. “It’s fine,” he repeated with a creaky voice.

“What are you doing tonight? Can I see you?”

“I don’t think that… ”

“Just for a cup of tea or something?”

Why was he so weak? “Okay, if you come to my place.”

“Great. What time?”

“Around eight.”

“Fine. See ya.”

It was almost eight thirty before he showed up. He looked pretty fresh, apparently he had slept a few hours before he left. They hugged and the smell of his newly washed, gently scented skin sent chills through Thomas’s body. In that moment he was ready to submit totally and let himself be used sexually all night. He wondered if that was why he really had agreed that Matthias could come over.

Matthias sat in the living room while Thomas made tea. First they didn’t really talk, only about the shitty weather – and in March! – and what they had of plans the following week. After the first cup of tea and the first cigarette Matthias said, “About last night… ”

Thomas inhaled deeply. “Yes?”

“It’s just that… ” He moved around nervously, pulled one leg up in the sofa, put it down again and then pulled them both up and settled with them crossed. His short, black shirt slid up and revealed a piece of his tan stomach. Thomas had to brace himself to not stare hungrily at it. “It’s just that, every time I see you,” Matthias continued, “I get a fucking sick craving for you. And yesterday it was particularly bad.”

“I noticed.”

“I didn’t mean to get mad. But I was so horny I could have fucked a deceased cow.”

Against his will, Thomas laughed. “You really know how to express yourself.”

Matthias didn’t flinch when he continued: “But the only one I crave is you. Of course, I can think a guy is hot, nice, has a nice ass, whatever, but if he shows interest in me too… I back out. Because it’s really just you my longing is for. I can’t even think of another guy when wanking without you getting involved.”

Thomas looked at him carefully, trying to catch a movement in his eyes or the corner of his mouth that would reveal that it was all a joke, but found nothing. As far as he could tell, Matthias was telling the honest-to-fuck truth. Right now he just really wanted to be alone… either that, or they should just fuck each other’s brains out. As Matthias was sitting there with his black hair, the blond roots showing, his big, brown eyes, his stumpy T-shirt and white jeans, it was all Thomas could do to not reach out and take his hand. “Are you still in love with me?” he asked before he could stop himself. He didn’t want to hear the answer, didn’t want it neither denied nor confirmed.

Matthias smiled and looked away. “I dunno. I mean, sometimes it feels like it. Sometimes I feel that you could give me everything I want.”

Thomas put out his cigarette. “But I can’t. I know it’s stupid, but I can’t forget Anders. And these days I think about him a lot.”

“I understand. You loved each other and it ended in a stupid way.”

“Did he really love me?”

“Yes. Shit, when the two of you looked at each other I was about to die of jealousy. I so wanted to be in his place.”

“I was in love with you, Matthias. But you didn’t want anything.”

“Not then.”

As opposed to now? Thomas wondered. Their eyes met, Matthias’s smiling and hesitant. Thomas sighed and finally took his hand. “What the hell. What is one more time?”

Thomas was sitting on the bed, Matthias standing in front of him. He kissed his stomach, his tongue playing in and around the belly button and he loosened the belt and unbuttoned the jeans. Matthias’s cock stood erect and willing from the nest of hair when his trousers were pulled down. Thomas gently squeezed the full balls and closed his lips around the throbbing head which was already wet from pre-cum. Matthias thrusted forward and Thomas grasped his buttocks and pulled him onto the bed where they moments later, with Thomas on top, were kissing passionately. Matthias turned to lie on his stomach, legs spread and Thomas spread his buttocks, bent down and started to lick his warm crack. When the hole was softened he inserted two fingers and wriggled them from side to side.

Squirming and moaning Matthias whispered: “Give it to me! Fuck me!”

“You sure?” Thomas asked teasingly.

“If you don’t, I’ll sue your ass!”

“Hey hey, easy now.” But he grabbed his dick and thrust it at the opening. Matthias got up on all four and slid down Thomas’s member and the connection had them both gasping for breath. It had been three months since they last were together and Thomas had forgotten how perfect they fit into each other, as if Matthias’s ass was molded to fit his cock. “Fucking hell,” he moaned through clenched teeth.

“You can’t come yet,” Matthias said. “I wanna feel ya a little longer.”

“It will only be a little.” He jammed it all the way in and he wasn’t gentle; he hadn’t had sex in a long time and now that he was at it again he couldn’t control himself. His brain was shut off, feelings buried, left was only the primal instinct and the sole action of getting a release. For every trust he lost a bit of grounding and when he finally came and Matthias willingly took every drop, he felt as if he was sent in orbit around his own body and with a roar he collapsed on Matthias’s back, drenched in sweat, pulled out, turned him around, took his cock in his mouth, heard a distant voice telling him to be more careful, but he couldn’t, not right now, that dick was the hottest thing he’d ever had in his mouth and Matthias arched his back as he shot his juices down Thomas’s throat, but that wasn’t enough for Thomas, he still had a firm grip on his dick, rubbing it violently, wanted more, more, more, oh God, he was just getting started, he wanted to tie Matthias to the bed, and wouldn’t let him go till there wasn’t a drop left in him, but Matthias pulled back and Thomas threw himself at him, forced his tongue into his mouth and he felt something hard going into his ass, wanted it there forever, and he rode Matthias, rode him like he had never ridden anyone and they both came again and could rest at last.

“My god,” Matthias said, smiling. “I’ve never seen you like that before.”

Thomas was still gasping for air. His chest rose and fell dangerously. “That was fucking great,” he croaked.

“Mmm. I’ll have a cig. Want one?”

“Yeah.”

They held each other while smoking and when they turned off the lights Matthias lay close to Thomas. Now that everything was silent around them, common sense returned. Thomas knew that he could never get serious with Matthias, no matter how great the sex.

He couldn’t stop thinking about the guy with bluish-grey eyes and he still hoped to meet Anders again.

Matthias, of course, didn’t agree.

The next morning he had an important appointment and when they said goodbye he kissed Thomas passionately and said: “See ya tonight.”

“You will?” Thomas asked.

“Won’t I?”

“Why would you think that?”

“After last night… ” He tilted his head towards the bedroom.

“You were a total maniac.”

“Matthias… ”

“Now what? Wanna tell me it didn’t mean a thing?”

“It was great and you’re a nice guy… ”

“But?”

“But it has to stop. I can’t get my old feelings for you back. I’m thinking too much about Anders and about… ” He fell silent. It would sound ridiculous.

“About whom?”

“Forget it.”

“Who?”

He looked away, couldn’t meet Matthias’s stare. “About a guy I saw last weekend. I don’t know anything about him, other than he has brownish hair and bluish-grey eyes.”

“A guy you only saw? Who means more to you than I do?”

“I haven’t promised you anything.”

“I was pouring my heart out to you last night and you fuck me…

and that’s it? What the hell are you thinking?”

“I’m sorry… ”

“I would fucking hope so!” He shook his head, defeated. “Has anyone ever told you you’re an asshole?”

Thomas at last found the strength to look him directly in the eyes. “I’m not gonna listen to that.”

“Fine, I was leaving anyway.”

“Good. Fuck off.”

“If you treated Anders the same way, it’s no fucking wonder he left.”

That hurt him deeply, Thomas felt, even if there was no truth to it. All colour disappeared from his face, the tone of his voice fell several degrees and his stare was almost just as cold. “I. Didn’t.”

Maybe it was Thomas’s chilly, measured voice that had Matthias calming down. “Sorry. I didn’t mean that, I… ”

“Drop it. I think it’s time you left.”

“I’m sorry.”

“I don’t wanna see you again. Don’t call, don’t come over.”

“Hell, Thomas… ”

“I mean it. I don’t know what the fuck is wrong with you, if you’re bipolar or whatever. Just shut your face and go.”

Matthias sighed and reached for him, but Thomas took a step to the side and opened the door. He didn’t say anything, was just standing, hand on doorknob, waiting.

Without a sound Matthias turned around and left.

In the following, increasing loneliness Thomas sat on the sofa, chain-smoking.

In the months following the break with Anders, the thought of suicide had crossed his mind more than once, but he had always seen himself as strong and what was suicide, other than self-defense of the weak? Now the thought was back and with it a sense of peace. It would be so easy, a quick flash of light on the knife’s edge, a short, burning pain in the wrist, then exhaustion and darkness. It was how he envisioned it, anyway. Who would miss him? Katinka, and maybe Lasse. His family. He had enough friends and a wonderful family, but no one that needed him, no one he really was anything to. He had to face that he wasn’t cut for a relationship, that he always destroyed them, that it apparently was his fate to be alone, and what moderately sane person could lead a meaningful life with that knowledge?

Maybe Katinka was right, he put too much meaning in couplehood, but it was easy for her to say; she had met Jens when she was eighteen and they had been together for thirteen years and had built a life together. She didn’t know how it felt to lose someone you really love.

And if he just were able to dig out his old feelings for Matthias. But he was in no way like Anders, and that was what he wanted: a substitute for what he had lost, even though he knew that here, eighteen months later, neither he nor Anders were the same people as they were back then. He knew that they would never see each other again and he knew that he had fucked it up with Matthias. So now he had to choose: the quick solution, or get on with his life with the risk of getting hurt again.

If he got off, said goodbye and good riddance